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The Schmooze

New ‘Wonder Woman’ release date lets everyone celebrate Christmas like Jews do

Looks like Jews won’t be the only ones watching movies on Christmas Day.

In fact, our way of celebrating the coming of Christ — that is, enjoying a matinée and a large Chinese dinner — may finally achieve the mainstream popularity it deserves.

Warner Bros. announced that “Wonder Woman 1984,” the sequel to the hugely successful 2017 “Wonder Woman” and one of the most anticipated releases of the deeply messed-up year that is 2020, will premiere in theaters and on HBO Max on Dec. 25. Originally scheduled for June 5 of this year, the film’s release has been postponed several times due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Wonder Woman herself — or rather, Gal Gadot, who plays her — took to Twitter to comment on the announcement. “It wasn’t an easy decision and we never thought we’d have to hold on to the release for such a long time,” she wrote. “We feel the movie has never been so relevant and we hope that it’ll bring some joy, hope and love to your hearts.”

But was her message a coded one? Here’s how writer Tamar Herman interpreted it on Twitter: “Gal really said ‘everyone can have a Jewish Christmas this year, stay home, be safe, and eat Chinese food and watch Wonder Woman 1984.’”

Unlike other blockbuster films like “Mulan,” which also premiered on streaming platforms, “Wonder Woman” will be available at no extra cost to HBO Max subscribers. It’s a bold gambit for Warner Bros., since superhero movies tend to be big earners at the box office; the original “Wonder Woman” earned $828.1 million in 2017, with about 4 million Americans purchasing tickets the day it premiered.

This time around, executives will measure the success of “Wonder Woman” not by ticket sales but by the number of new subscribers the film brings to the platform.

But the Schmooze is only interested in one metric: Chinese takeout sales. Only with a marked uptick will we know that “Wonder Woman 1984” has done its duty by the Jewish people.

Irene Katz Connelly is an editorial fellow at the Forward. You can contact her at connelly@forward.com. Follow her on Twitter at @katz_conn.

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